Date of Award
Master of Science
Autonomous collaborative robotics is a topic of significant interest to groups such as the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). These two groups have been developing systems for the operation of autonomous vehicles over the past several years, but each system has several critical drawbacks. AFRL’s Unmanned Systems Autonomy Services (UxAS) supports pathfinding for multiple tasks performed by groups of vehicles, but has no formal verification, very little physical flight time, and no concept of collision avoidance. NASA’s Independent Configurable Architecture for Reliable Operations of Unmanned Systems (ICAROUS) has collision avoidance, partial formal verification, and thousands of hours of physical flight time, but has no concept of collaboration. AFRL and NASA each wanted to incorporate the features of the other’s software into their own, and so the CRoss-Application Translator for Operational Unmanned Systems (CRATOUS) was created. CRATOUS creates a communication bridge between UxAS and ICAROUS, allowing for full feature integration of the two system. This combined software is the first system that allows for the safe and reliable cooperation of groups of unmanned vehicles.
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